Greetings From Jim Dennis
Well, it's getting close to the end of the year.
So, what will I be doing:
I hope to continue doing "the answer guy" --- and maybe I'll finally get around to writing some custom procmail scripts to structure it so that the Answer Guy can become "the Answer Gang"
(I'd like to thank those who offered to participate in this project earlier this year. I haven't meant to snub any of you, but I haven't had any time to build on this idea either).
I've been elected to the board of directors for BayLISA (the Silicon Valley and SF Bay Area chapter of SAGE, which is the USENIX Systems Administrators' Guild --- we inherited the 'e' from the creat() system call). I hope to promote better organization of system administrators in the bay area and around the world.
I'll be at the annual USENIX/SAGE conference: LISA (Large Instllations System Administration) during the 2nd week of this month.
I hope to finish my book real soon now. I've been courting a co-author on the project and have found someone that might be interested. This will be _Linux_Systems_Administration_ --- but should be of use to all sysadmins on all platforms. My goal in writing this is to genuinely raise the state of the art in systems administration and to provide the basis for "best practice" guidelines in the field.
I started research and notes for my book about three years ago (with no intent of seeking a publisher until a good chunk of it was done). Last March an editor approach me and asked if I'd consider working on a book for them (Macmillan Computer Publishing: http://www.mcp.com/). When I agreed to work on this, the group I was working with was about as relaxed as book publishers ever get (from what I've heard). However, since Linux has suddenly become a hot topic they are now under pressure to get things rolling.
When someone pops into the comp.unix.admin newsgroup or onto the linux-admin mailing list with the old question: I've just been assigned these systems what should I read --- I'd like to see my book listed along with Aeleen Frisch's _Essential_System_Administration_ (O'Reilly & Associates), a.k.a. "the armadillo book" and the _Unix_System_Administrator's_Handbook by Evi Nemeth et al (Prentic-Hall, a.k.a. "the cranberry book").
The other major project I have on the horizon is a half day seminar/tutorial on the subject of "Linux Security for the System Administrator" to be presented at the upcoming LinuxWorld Expo (http://www.linuxworldexpo.com)
My goal for that is to show enough admins enough about securing their Linux systems from common threats that Linux can shed its reputation for being "easy" to break into. (Of course, everyone reading this can get a head start by reading Dave Wreski's Security Admin Guide (http://nic.com/~dave/SecurityAdminGuide/) and his Security-HOWTO (http://sunsite.unc.edu/LDP/HOWTO/Security-HOWTO.html at your usual LDP mirror site.
Dave gets "The Answer Guy" support award of the month for his work on these documents and for his participation on the linux-admin mailing list.
Other than than, I'll need to get a lot more consulting done next year since I've devoted a bit too much of this year to writing TAG and my book. (My wife, Heather has been gracious enough to support me while I'm pursuing these new vocations). [I also work on a preprocessing script and then polish up the HTML for this column every month. -- Heather]
So, it looks like a busy year for me as well as the rest of the Linux community.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.